The Dish, a new event, will offer perspectives on the food and beverage industry at a Pine Bluff meeting, according to a news release.

The free event will be held from 6-8 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 13, at Pine Bluff First Assembly of God, 1002 Ridgway Road.

Sponsored by the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center, the event will feature a panel of local business owners and resource providers who will discuss how to survive and thrive in the industry, according to the release.

Panelists will include Johnny Jynes of Taste and See Catering; Angela White-Smith of The Escape Room; Samantha Merritt of the Jefferson County Health Department; and Steve Lucchi, a founder of Whole Hog Café’ who is now with SCORE (Service Corps of Retired Executives.)

Attendees may also ask questions after the panel discussion.

“Want to start a restaurant or other food-based business? Hear about what you need besides a tasty product to be successful at The Dish,” a spokesman said in the release.

Panelists will discuss every aspect of running a food or beverage business, including how to handle management challenges, attract and please customers and keep up with food safety regulations, according to the release.

The Dish is part of the Small Business and Technology Development Center’s series of events for current and prospective owners of food-related businesses in central Arkansas. The event is co-sponsored by SCORE, The Generator and Pine Bluff First Assembly.

Although the event is free, pre-registration is required. Participants may register online at or by calling 800-862-2040.

Details: Shannon Roberts, or visit